What do we call a state up for grabs this fall? Purple?
The Oregonian, trying to convince us that we are important and, by extension, the Oregonian is important, tells us that we should expect to see a lot of Bush and Kerry between now and November.
I wouldn’t get my hopes up. In fact, I hope that’s wrong.
I just got back from three days of depositions in central Oregon, which by rights is Red Oregon. It’s almost as if there isn’t an election going on over there at all. I did not see a single Bush Cheney bumper sticker. Not a lawn sign. Not a field sign. In fact, the only evidence that we were in an election year at all was the Democratic HQ in Bend.
What this tells me is that the GOP isn’t getting its folks out in places they need to count on. The polls say that Oregon is no worse than six points Kerry without Nader on the ballot . . . and Nader isn’t going to be on the ballot.
To the north, Washington is blue, and, to the south, California is true blue. Around us is a sea of red — Idaho, Montana, Wyoming, Utah. Maybe Nevada’s up for grabs, but the votes are in Clark County, over 1000 miles away. From where I sit, this entire quarter of the country is settled. As the days count down, campaigns even try to minimize hours a candidate wastes in the air. Phoenix, Las Vegas and Albuquerque are close to each other. They’re not close enough to here.
And let’s not forget that our election starts in mid-October, and after that, forget about any Kerry or Edwards sightings.
So figure we’ve got one more visit in the works — probably sometime in September, and then watch the action move elsewhere.
And while that may not be exciting, it’s for the best. Oregon needs to be taken for granted by a Democratic campaign. If we can’t put these seven electoral votes in the bank, we’re in deep, deep trouble. So let’s hope that last Friday’s history making rally for Kerry is about the last time we see him, except on our televisions.